Al Sharpton stepped to the podium at the Second Baptist Church of Los Angeles on Sunday to speak about Whitney Houston less than 24 hours after her death in a Beverly Hills hotel room on the eve of the Grammys. Sharpton, who is asking for a national day of prayer for Houston, dedicated the first 10 minutes of his 45-minute sermon to Houston.
He went on to implore the audience of about 200 to "Don't remember the rumors. Remember the voice God gave this lady and she gave that voice to the world."
She "was an international icon," he said. "Whatever she did was on the front page. Don't delve in the mess. All of us have some mess."
A video of his remarks via the AP: